Weinsteins make a date with 'Cristina'


The Weinstein Co. has picked up North American distribution rights to Woody Allen's romantic comedy/drama "Vicky Cristina Barcelona," starring Javier Bardem, Penelope Cruz and Scarlett Johansson.

Patricia Clarkson, Kevin Dunn, Rebecca Hall and Chris Messina also star in the tale of Vicky and Christina (Hall and Johansson, respectively), two Americans vacationing in the title's Spanish city who become part of a chain of romances involving an artist (Bardem) and his nutty ex-wife (Cruz).

A steamy menage a trois sequence among Bardem, Cruz and Johansson was the talk of the American Film Market when it previewed in November in Santa Monica.

Another selling point might be the offscreen romance between Bardem and Cruz. The pair also are coming together for the Weinstein Co.'s adaptation of the Broadway musical "Nine" for director Rob Marshall.

The film marks Allen's sixth with Bob and Harvey Weinstein, beginning with his 1994 comedy "Bullets Over Broadway" and continuing this month with "Cassandra's Dream." A 2008 release of "Cristina" is planned.